Archive For The “The Real Mann Way” Category
Boy do I love food! But what I hate more than anything is how good they make food look on television. It’s portrayed to be an experience shared with your friends and family that has no consequences when you have a glutenous appetite. What’s most surprising is that no commercial shows the effects of eating with no control. Just keep the bread sticks coming!
They go as far as showing the somewhat healthy choices available, while you’re curled up on the couch…with the idea you’re getting to cheat a little. Oh but still no portion control suggestions, and they do present them as comfort foods! With the United States being one of if not the most overweight country in the world, it’s as if food companies want us addicted to food. To further promote this strategy, most commercials tie it to sharing time together, or it being that comfort food.
As a real man, my opinion is that every food commercial, menu, menu board, promotional advertisement, receipt book, and anything else that references food on it should have the caloric intake listed on it. This gives us the chance to make educated choices about what we consume. Now if you know ahead of time what you’re consuming, and you still make the decision to stuff yourself…then it’s your fault.
From the way food companies advertise it appears they think that we are not smart enough to make healthy choices, so many companies are okay making profits on the dysfunctions of an uneducated food society. And I’m going to say, the way most people look in our country…they may be right!
Take it from someone who got himself healthy and in shape…the restaurants and pharmaceutical companies make a lot of money from those who have no self control, but they make less from those who get their lives in order. Be a real man and eat like you’re in control…believe it, the food and pharmaceutical companies will hate you, but your family will love you for being around longer.
I had contemplated writing about another topic until my weekend experience with my family. It was an experience that I truly hope you do not robe yourself of if you are a parent. My thoughts go all the way back to when we brought the two car seats home with our twins in them. We of course knew that some day it would happen, but had no idea that them getting ready for college would come so fast.
I think back to when we were planting the seeds of which college we wanted them to attend early on. It was a simple process of simply buying them gear from that university in hopes they would buy into the university’s brand. And believe me we invested a chunk of change into it trying to sway that decision. For awhile we could see them get excited about the sporting events connected to their passions, and we had several opportunities to visit the campus. What we didn’t think about was that the recruiting process is something very special, and that every young adult should have the opportunity to experience it!
I had the pleasure of taking my twin son to his first official visit, and boy was it nice to hear how they had scouted him on the baseball field. What I loved most was hearing how little they talked about the game itself, but how they focus on what happens outside of the white lines of the field. Those coaches were interested in helping him build his character, be a steward to others, develop good study habits, and how to be a good teammate on and off the field. They were clear that what happens on the field should happen on the field, so what separates their program from others is the extra work they do off of it.
I was impressed with the way he handled himself, and it was a true reflection of the work we had poured into him over the years. What I know now is, what ever college may get him, they will be lucky to have him.
After our Chicago trip we loaded up again to head to Wisconsin. The soccer coach met us at the gate that surrounded all of their sport facilities, and it too was an impressive campus. The tour of the campus was really nice, but the best part was having the recruiting talk in the head coach’s office. He also shared all of the scouting they did while seeing my daughter play at different tournaments throughout the year.
The coach offered her a roster spot right then and there, and further talked about seeing her as a valuable part of the team next year. It was really exciting to sit back and watch the recruiting process, but even more so watching the reaction of our children hearing the accolades being given to them on their athletic abilities. And even though my my son got to meet with the baseball coach too, neither one of them really connected with the campus or the coaches.
The moral of the story is to take those college trips as a family together, because the next step in the journey for them…should not be faced alone. Oh, and you get to see their faces light up when they’ve found the right college fit for themselves!
As we age we rely on our bodies less and less, because technology has taken the place of many of the things we used to do manually. An email or text has replaced a hand written letter and/or telephone call. Cable and satellite television have changed our willingness to get the family together to go to a movie. Now I love sports, but I honestly can count on one hand how many professional sporting events I’ve attended in the last five years, because my access via sports channels has decreased my desire to brave the traffic, crowds, ticket pricing, and incur the cost of food for a family our size.
Once we fail at our New Year’s Resolution, exercise is practiced by a select few, because the quick fix is easier than doing the work. And where there is a quick fix you generally have millions of people jumping on the band wagon to give it a try. I mean come on, you’re telling me that I can lose weight by eating bacon, cheese, eggs, and meat. We’ll who in the heck would not want to try that if they’re a carnivore. You see, another quick fix that influences one to not do the work necessary to loose or not gain the weight in the first place.
Finding relationships has evolved from meeting a friend of a friend to completing an on-line profile. The profile acts as a wish list for match making. We of course describes ones characteristics, but it also gives you a chance to describe what or who you’d like to match your profile. Now I’m not suggesting that the science behind it doesn’t make all the sense in the world. But I bet you were little surprised when you finally met someone and the picture was really of them from 20 years ago. Hey- you forgot to mention on your profile that you gained 100 pounds, and that full head of hair you used to have is now down the drain.
Even the simple enjoyment of conversations has morphed into emails, messaging or texting. And oh and how we have destroyed the English language by using letters instead of spelling out an entire word when we’re using those forms of communication. Once again taking the easy road even in simple forms of communications. Most people would say it’s just more convenient to use the short version of it, that’s until you get a formal piece of communications with those abbreviations in it. And yes…I’ve seen it live. The funniest part is watching two people right next to each other, or even in the same room having a conversation on their devices.
Can someone tell me when it became acceptable to begin a sentence with the word, “Like.” And how is it physically possible to use the word like so many times in one sentence to begin with. I somehow believe that my vision of seeing those same teenagers as young adults saying, “Like” is going to come true. Which leads me to my point – I really miss the simple life where we actually did the work. I’m sure there are many quicker ways to do things, but they should not be at cost of loosing the physical interaction with another human being. Now I won’t say I haven’t sent an e-card or two in my day, but the ones I take the time to pick out and give personally are priceless! So do yourself a favor and take the long way sometimes…it’s all about the simple life.
Why do so many people spend their time talking in circles rather than just getting to the point. As a listener I find it very difficult to wade through hidden messages, or better yet…trying to understand what you meant to say. And I find it insulting and irritating when someone says to me, “Well you know what I meant.” That statement by far is the furthest thing from the truth. Why? Because I take and respond to the question asked of me rather than attempting to filter through the hidden message within it.
One might say that I am being difficult on purpose, but that’s not the case. I have found that I do not and will not dedicate any time trying to understand innuendos, or listen to anyone taking the long way around the block to get to a simple point. Here’s a new idea (not really), say what you mean…so you mean what you say!
How easy would it be for someone to truly communicate their feelings, what they want, or even what they expect of someone else. Why are people afraid of being open and honest with their message rather than having someone figure it out on their own. It’s like a dog circling to catch its own tail, it keeps on going but cannot figure out why they can’t catch it. And when they do, they’re sometimes stupid enough to bite it.
What surprises me the most is when I actually communicate and explain the way I listen. Now if they truly want me to hear them, I would think that the sender would take the responsibility of altering their delivery. Instead they continue to send the message in its original circle form, which looses me almost from the time they start speaking. Why do they loose my attention so quickly you ask? Because I’m searching for the facts that are buried somewhere deep in this ever flowing mess of unnecessary words that I’m trying to filter through.
For some reason I have not quite figured out why the other person gets upset when I answer to what I’ve heard, or when I ask them to get to the point. The funny part is they’re generally asking for my help on something, and get insulted when I want to know the part I can help with, rather than hearing the result of the decision that got them to this point in the first place.
Whenever this happens to me I only have one lingering thought on my mind. I’m on my death bed about to meet my maker, and I’m asking God for a little more time to tell those I love how much I love them. God responds back and says to me, “My son do you remember all the conversations you listened to and you didn’t ask them to get the point? And do you remember all the time you spent filtering through hidden messages to find the facts? Well unfortunately you used the extra time I would have given you to do those things, and I now have to take you.”
I recently had the honor of sharing breakfast with a good friend of mine, and our conversation ranged all across the board. For those of you who don’t know, basically when two dudes get together for a conversation…you just never know where it’s going to go!
The part of the conversation I enjoyed the most was his love for and the relationship he had with his mother. Based on our conversation you could tell he loved his mother very much, and that she was an important part of his life until the day she passed. To be honest I love to hear that someone feels deeply about their parents, instead of the opposite of how they often blame them for everything bad in their lives. It’s as if they feel they have no choice in their lives after they leave the comfort or discomfort of their parent’s homes. He spoke deeply about her, and I was more than comfortable that he got a little choked up as he spoke about someone so special in his life. Now that’s a real man if I ever laid eyes one.
The part I found most interesting was when we began to talk about a couple of his siblings. There were two of them that sounded like the worst people one could ever meet. Instead of mourning the loss of someone who should have been close to them, they were only concerned with what they were getting from the estate. Rightfully so, another sibling and himself were appointed executors of the estate and worked as the go between with the attorneys and those vile people he had to call siblings. With their interests only being focused on what they’ll get, one can only imagine how difficult it was to work with them. It went so far…that pictures had to be taken so the sharks wouldn’t just take things from the estate solely for themselves.
When we finally came to the part about whether he should work to bring the family back together I had one question. If a person doesn’t know they’re drowning what is the point of throwing them a life preserver? I also wanted to know why did he feel this need to be a hero for a lost cause? Now I am the first to believe that we should accept people for who and what they are, but I also believe you being in my life is my choice and not a right of passage because we are family.
Those shark siblings are circling and waiting to take advantage of a situation that requires mourning and sensitivity of those who’ve experienced a loss of someone dear to them. And while the ones that truly care are not focused on the possessions left behind, the sharks do what sharks do – they attack when they see blood! I feel for my friend having to deal with them, and I hope that at some point he overlooks the fact that they are related by blood, and cuts them loose. After all, I don’t know anyone who had a choice in choosing their siblings, but I know many who had a choice in choosing their friends, regardless if they were siblings or not.
We’d like to know if you have any of those life sucking, leach oriented sharks in your life, and if so how you’ve handled them as a real man?
The weakest among us can participate in athletics, but only the strongest can survive as spectators. According to a heart specialists, when you become a sports spectator rather than a participant, the wrong things go up and the wrong things go down. Body weight, blood pressure, heart rate, cholesterol and triglycerides go up. Vital capacity, oxygen consumption, flexibility, stamina, and strength go down.
The reason I share this information is because of how I’ve become dedicated to my own health and well-being. My journey from 240 lbs to 197 lbs and a 38 inch waist down to 31.5 inch waist was a well thought out and paced journey. My first step was choosing reasons important enough to get healthy in the first place, or called it my WHY. I had three of them. The first was for me, and centered around me being a Type II Diabetic. Did you know if you don’t manage it properly they’ll actually start removing things from your body? It also can result in blindness, congestive heart failure, and the truly big one…your man parts may not work. Well none of those outcomes were going to work for me.
The second reason was my family. I would like to be around for all of the things I have worked so hard for in rearing my children, and being with my lovely wife. There are still to many milestones my children have not experienced that I’d like not to miss, graduation of high school and college, their own marriages, and of course making me a grandfather some day!
The third reason was my own quality of life as I continue to age. Now that I’ve gotten down to a much more reasonable weight, I am moving better and have a lot more energy. I also know that the exercise I’m doing now will help me keep fit in my later years. As a 56 year old man I can honestly say…I feel like I’m 25. It feels good to push my machine like I did when I was younger, which in turn has improved my quality of life. The final outcome will result in the purchase of new clothing because now nothing fits, but that is the price you pay when you get healthy!
My formula was simple, simply burn more than you take in. We all know that’s the formula, but for some reason most of us refuse to settle on that logic and continue to gain weight. And instead of dong something we simply accommodate being bigger. Ever since I committed to PUSHING GO EVERYDAY, I’ve seen and felt such a difference in myself. What does pushing go mean? It means you finding your form of workout, eating right, and tracking and measuring your progress.
Here are things I did when I decided to push go every day:
- I downloaded and use a fitness Application daily and religiously (No excuses that it is to hard or inconvenient)
- I found the workout I love and do it daily
- I found a workout that streams through my computer or iPhone, so it travels with me, and I’m not stuck finding a gym
- I burned more than I took in (I reward myself when appropriate)
- I altered my thinking and realized a diet is any thing you eat, so I found eating plan to be a better word
- I weighed myself everyday to track a plateau or spike in my weight
- I developed six different accountability buddies, and we communicate our activity to each other daily
- I committed to doing something every day – no matter what
- I realized that this has to be a lifestyle, and not stopping when I hit a goal weight
Here are the real questions, are you where you want to be at this stage in your life, and in order to get there are you willing to Push Go Everyday? If you’re a real man you are!
I have really enjoyed writing this blog and receiving comments on the different topics. And one of the other things I’ve enjoyed is from time-to-time finding blogs written by others that intrigue me enough to share them. The topics that most interest me are the ones that focus on changing ones attitude or ones perception of life. This blog written by David Zulberg is one of them.
Sometimes changing your physical circumstances isn’t possible — or not possible soon enough, or you may want a less drastic change, but you still want to be happier. You can’t get to a new job right away or you regularly bump into that friend who makes you feel badly, what options do you have left?
Change your perception, belief or opinion of the situation — and that will help you change your attitude.
The Greek philosopher Epictetus said it beautifully more than 2,000 years ago: “People are disturbed, not by things (that happen to them), but by the principles and opinions which they form concerning (those) things. When we are hindered, or disturbed, or grieved, let us never attribute it to others, but to ourselves; that is, to our own principles and opinions.”
Modern behavioral science agrees! American psychologist Albert Ellis, famous for developing rational emotive behavior therapy, explained that “how” people react to events is determined largely by their “view” of the events, not the events themselves.
Have no clue how to change your perception — and improve your attitude? Here are five easy ways to start:
1. Admit to yourself that you’re not happy.
You can’t change anything if you aren’t aware that something needs to be changed. Stop the cycle of wishing things were different and take control of your thoughts and reactions to events and people.
2. Realize optimism is a choice.
You are not born with a positive or negative attitude. It is something you become through your perspective of experiences. Very few situations are completely bad. Always try to come up with three to five positives of any challenging situation and write them down so you can remember them.
3. Use positive words.
Use statements like, “I am hopeful,” or, “We will find a resolution,” throughout the day. The words you use when you talk have a major impact on your attitude and emotional outlook.
4. Hang out with friends who have a happy vibe.
Try surrounding yourself with friends that exude positive energy. Pay attention to the words they use when they talk to you about their day. You will be amazed how simple it is to ascertain if they are a positive or negative influence.
5. Say a daily affirmation.
Find a quote that is meaningful to you and say it aloud every morning. “Something great is going to happen today,” sends your energy in an expectant and positive direction. I know it sounds a bit “Zen” and somewhat mystical, but it is actually a very simple and effective method for retraining your subconscious mind — and advocated by both ancient and scientific research.
So the next time you are faced with a challenging situation, remember these tips for molding your perception — and improving your attitude. You may not be able to change it, but you can certainly choose your mental and physical response to it. As time passes, you will notice a real shift in your attitude, and so will your friends and family!
Are you in need of change in your attitude? Real men are constantly evolving, and spend a great deal of time self evaluating to facilitate their own growth. The real man question is…are you a real man?
Don’t you find it fascinating that there are certain parts of life that really suck? When we’re children we are so full of energy, and the world is truly your oyster. Back then and still now a child’s imagination flows in way that a box can be a spaceship, the snow can be made into a cave, or even better yet those action figures really do come to life in their minds.
When you’re a teenager you have the sense of being invincible. One can stay out and party all night with friends and still make to class the next day. Do you remember looking at that 16 inch pizza and thinking to yourself…not a problem, I got this. Or having the metabolism to pound down whatever you wanted and not gain a pound. And then there was getting injured and bouncing back the next day like it was nothing.
Your college years were a time of self discovery to figure out what you wanted to be. It also had a little bit of acceptance attached to it if you were wanting to join a fraternity or sorority. What on earth were people thinking knowing they were going to go through a hazing process?
But now you’ve graduated, and the process of dreaming, planning, and execution begins. One dreams of getting that wonderful job out of college, so they start to plan by scheduling the interviews, and executing by actually getting the job. As we progress we take a similar process as we’re moving through the organization, or duplicate that process by moving to another company that can satisfy it.
As we get a little older the thought of beginning a family enters our minds, so guess what we began to dream, plan, and execute again with the search our ideal mate. Of course some may start earlier than others, but wanting to expand their families and adding children is often the next step. So guess what, you’re right, we start dreaming, planning, and then executing again.
Now that our little bundle joy has arrived we’re going to need more room than the apartment for two has been providing, so getting a home seems to be the next logical step. Now that we’ve come to that conclusion, guess what…you’re right, we start dreaming, planning, and then executing again. Since the family has expanded you can probably guess that the small two door car you’ve been driving is not going to meet your needs now with the little one or ones for that matter, so guess what…you’re right, we start dreaming, planning, and then executing again.
Now that the children are older and the taxi service has begun, depending on what they’re into, you may be traveling in different directions. And even though you enjoy seeing them play it becomes taxing, tiring, and even burdensome, because your time is no longer your own.
Now let me share the real moral to the story. That dreaming, planning, and executing stages are the best part of our lives. It’s attached to hope, the future, and the things we are trying to achieve in our lives. Once we get caught up or better yet trapped into the doldrums of just dealing with our responsibilities – it SUCKS! So even though we can get away from those responsibilities there should be a time, places and things that we still dream about, plan about, and focus on executing.
Ask yourself are you a still dreaming, planning, and then executing? I would love to read your comments on this.
Even though this year the celebration of our independence will fall during the middle of the week, they’ll be no less hot dogs, hamburgers, potatoes salad, and desserts consumed. Nor will there be no less fireworks shot off! I hope that you and yours’ enjoy a happy and safe Independence day.
Oh and by the way…Here’s what is it really all about. The Declaration of Independence. We celebrate American Independence Day on the Fourth of July every year. We think of July 4, 1776, as a day that represents the Declaration of Independence and the birth of the United States of America as an independent nation.
For those of you who possess the title, but didn’t or don’t do the work…this is not for you. That’s because your only gift to that party was your seed. But when it came to standing up and taking part and responsibility for the life you helped to create you were a father biologically – but not a dad.
For those of you who’ve taken and still take an active roll in your children’s lives, this is for you. You were there when they were born, and there for most if not all of the other significant events in their growing lives. For doing and continuing to do all of that work, and providing much more to your children…you are the ones truly being honored today.
Happy Dad’s Day!